The accuracy and safety of fluoroscopically guided percutaneous pedicle screws in the lumbosacral junction and the lumbar spine: a review of 880 screws

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Fluoroscopy
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Lumbar Vertebrae
  • Lumbosacral Region
  • Malaysia
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pedicle Screws
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Radiography, Interventional
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Spinal Diseases
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome
  • We undertook a retrospective study investigating the accuracy and safety of percutaneous pedicle screws placed under fluoroscopic guidance in the lumbosacral junction and lumbar spine. The CT scans of patients were chosen from two centres: European patients from University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Germany, and Asian patients from the University of Malaya, Malaysia. Screw perforations were classified into grades 0, 1, 2 and 3. A total of 880 percutaneous pedicle screws from 203 patients were analysed: 614 screws from 144 European patients and 266 screws from 59 Asian patients. The mean age of the patients was 58.8 years (16 to 91) and there were 103 men and 100 women. The total rate of perforation was 9.9% (87 screws) with 7.4% grade 1, 2.0% grade 2 and 0.5% grade 3 perforations. The rate of perforation in Europeans was 10.4% and in Asians was 8.6%, with no significant difference between the two (p = 0.42). The rate of perforation was the highest in S1 (19.4%) followed by L5 (14.9%). The accuracy and safety of percutaneous pedicle screw placement are comparable to those cited in the literature for the open method of pedicle screw placement. Greater caution must be taken during the insertion of L5 and S1 percutaneous pedicle screws owing to their more angulated pedicles, the anatomical variations in their vertebral bodies and the morphology of the spinal canal at this location.

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